The home inspection is arguably one of the most important step when purchasing a home. It can help you avoid a lot of risks before the transaction is finalized. A home may look like it is in perfect condition on the surface but underneath there may be problems just waiting to happen. Here are 9 important tips to remember when hiring a home inspector.

1: A home appraisal and home inspector are not the same thing.

A home appraisals purpose is to determine the value of the home where as a home inspection is to determine the safety and stability of the home.

2: A home inspector purpose

A home inspectors purpose is to not tell you whether you should purchase the home or not. However, they can provide you with the functionality of the house and what has to be replaced or fixed.

3: Make sure the home inspector is qualified

Being licensed to do a home inspection does not always mean they are qualified. Make sure you read reviews about your home inspector before you hire them.

4: Home inspectors will not check every nook and cranny

Unfortunately, a home inspector will not search every inch of your house. If they were to, it would waste both of your time and money. Home inspectors don’t have x-ray vision and can’t tear into walls or take something apart to investigate it. They are however equipped with specialized tools like infrared cameras, and moisture measurers that will help them do their job and complete their assessment.

5: Buyers are more than welcome at the inspection

There is an ongoing myth that buyers should not be present at the inspection and this is wrong. If anything, buyers can help the inspector go into more detail in the report by asking questions, and it will give them a three-dimensional view.

6: Not just old homes should be inspected

Brand-new homes and newly renovated homes are often categorized as not needing an inspection, this is false. Faulty construction can lead to all types of repair nightmare. Sometimes builders are more into money than safety. Especially if the house has not yet been lived in yet, the sellers may not be aware of faults in the appliances.

7: Home inspectors are not psychic

Home inspectors are often asked ‘how long will this last’ and unfortunately, they cannot predict the future. They can however give a report on the condition of certain items but cannot predict when a pipe will leak. Some inspectors will give you advice on how much to budget for the maintenance of your home.

8: A home inspection is not a pass or fail 

A home inspectors report is not a pass or fail test, it is to determine whether the house is safe to live in or not. Inspectors say that the report is on the buyer’s tolerance. They tend to ask buyers if they can live with certain issues.

** This blog post is based off an article written by Wendy Helfenbaum for